Working less, accomplishing more: Deep practices for working effectively and productively

This workshop introduces participants to the concept of deep work practices (drawing especially from Cal Newport’s book Deep Work and Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi work on Flow)

Throughout the session, participants will be encouraged to confront and redress unhelpful beliefs around what it means to ‘work hard’ and ‘be productive’. Participants are welcome to share their current working practices and will be supported to find and embrace their own optimal work rhythms, even (or especially) if they look very different from others’.

They will then be introduced to alternative practices that respect and leverage their preferred individual work practices, and also:

  • create more time for rest and play
  • enhance their focus and effectiveness during work
  • and generate sustainable progress that they can feel good about

‘Working less’ is not about absconding responsibilities or commitments. Rather, this workshop offers suggestions and practices that will support participants to work with so much more intentional focus, flow and ease that they can literally work fewer hours, but accomplish more in that time.

By exploring these deep work / deep focus practices, the workshop will also address challenges that PGRs commonly face around procrastination, (de)motivation, and feelings of guilt/shame for believing they are not working enough; and share practical tips for getting unstuck.

*Note: This workshop pairs very well with the workshop Work-life balance in the PhD

Learning outcomes

By the end of the workshop, participants will have learned:

  • to differentiate between deep work and shallow work, and how to plan for / do each type of work
  • how to incorporate deep work practices into their days for more effective and productive work
  • how to find and embrace their own optimal work rhythms and practices
  • how to continue to work and maintain momentum in their research even in periods of demotivation and procrastination
  • how to become more intentional and less guilt-ridden about taking time for rest, reward and play
  • how deep work practices can support a much more healthful work-life balance, while generating sustainable progress throughout the PhD

Workshop details

  • 1 hour and 30 minute workshop
  • Maximum attendance: 50 participants

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